Duke Energy completes its first floating solar project in Florida

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Duke Energy's Floating Solar Project // Duke Energy, 2023

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Duke Energy has completed a new floating solar panel project. The technology only makes up 2% of all solar installations in the U.S.

The floating solar array features more than 1,800 solar panels that float on top of 2 acres of water in a pond at Duke Energy’s location in Polk County.  Shayna Fraileigh is a project manager for Duke Energy Florida.

“It’s a floating solar project with a very minimal land footprint.”

The project took approximately six months to construct and connect to the grid.

The array is small and can create enough electricity to power about 100 homes. Fraileigh says the floating solar hasn’t had any negative effect on marine life in the pond. If this pilot program goes well, Duke Energy will consider expansion.

“We could, in theory, add as many megawatts as we could with the space that we have in the water and the grid limitations we have in the area as well”.

It’s Duke Energy’s second floating solar project, with a larger floating panel powering a US Army base in North Carolina.

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